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State News And Discussion - II
<b>Ghulam Nabi Azad to be J&K CM on November 2</b>
This is going to get weird.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Crack Gujarat & the market is yours

Got a new goodie or service? Offer it first to the consumer in Gujarat. If he approves, chances are it will sell anywhere. Like Pantaloon did with its unisex beauty saloon 'Star Sitara' that it is testing in Ahmedabad. Or when Hutch decided to take on BSNL, its 'cutting chai' tariff plan — brewed specially for upcountry consumers — was offered here in July and is now being rolled out elsewhere.
<b>Bihar police team in New Delhi to arrest Jaiprakash</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->A police team was on Wednesday sent to New Delhi from Jamui to execute the non-bailable warrant of arrest against Union Minister Jaiprakash Yadav in a case which charged him with of misuse of official position to cause "illegal escape" of his brother and RJD candidate for state assembly polls Vijay Prakash from police custody.

"The SP (Jamui) Arvind Kumar has sent a police team headed by a DSP-rank officer to New Delhi to arrest Yadav", official sources said, adding the team might be on way or would have reached Delhi.
Should we have thread "Our criminal Ministers" <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Godhra 2005: BJP-led civic body, backed by Muslims
In a House of 42, BJP has 19; 18 Muslim independents next largest group & they don’t want to go with Cong
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Posted online: Saturday, November 05, 2005 at 0203 hours IST

In Godhra: Circumstances alter cases VADODARA, NOVEMBER 4: This is as real as realpolitik can get. In Godhra, synonymous now with the Sabarmati Express carnage and the riots that engulfed Gujarat in its wake, the municipality is going to be governed by the BJP with support from all the 18 elected Muslims.

‘‘Even if they say they don’t want our support, we will go and sit in the BJP’s lap rather than oppose them,’’ says a Muslim leader who is leading this initiative. He did not wish to be named.

When the results for the October 25 municipal elections were out, the BJP emerged as the biggest group. Of the 42 seats, it won 19, but that does not give it a clear majority.

The second-largest group is of 18 Muslims who had stood as independents. The community, which has generally been allied with the Congress, decided not to have any truck with that party this time.

The remaining five councillors, all Hindus, are known to be allied with the Congress. But they, too, had stood as independents. There was no official Congress candidate.

‘‘Even if the BJP spurns us initially, we will somehow negotiate for a power-sharing arrangement,’’ says Rafiq Alam of the Muslim group.

Alam was the standing-committee chairman in the previous regime, in which a group of 17 Muslim independents had governed the municipality with support from the Congress. In that council, the BJP, with 12 councillors, had sat in opposition.

‘‘Let the arrangement prove a model of communal peace and cooperation,’’ said another leader.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
One down, six more to go

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Arun Nehru

In the last six months, I have written consistently about the Third Front. My writings were based on the assumption that both the Congress and the BJP would weaken which would result in realignment of political forces. The Congress does not have leaders who can provide an able leadership to the party and the BJP simply cannot determine a pattern for the future.

As 2005 will become history and we step into 2006, the political graph of the ADMK and the TDP will show a sharp rise. This will enable both the parties to have a decisive say in politics of the future. The Bihar election are first step towards this change.

General election can take place any time now. My prediction is that it will be held before 2006 ends or in early 2007. In Bihar the RJD/Congress/Left alliance has been humbled. With one down and six more elections to go, it would be a miracle if the Congress can win even a single Assembly election.

The Left is all set to sweep West Bengal once again with Trinamul Congress coming second. The same will be true in Kerala where the LDF will trounce UDF. On the other hand in Tamil Nadu, the grand alliance between the Congress/DMK/ MDMK/PMK/Left may receive an unexpected drubbing at the hands of 'Amma' who leads the ADMK. The latter is all set to reverse the results of the Lok Sabha election.

The AGP/BJP riding on the crest of 'minority migration' issue may win in Assam and the BJP may sweep Uttaranchal. In Punjab, despite the better efforts of the current Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, the results may go in favour of Akali Dal/BJP combine. Difficult days lie ahead as I have been saying for the last six months. This was evident from the crisis in Bihar.

Things in Karnataka have the potential to go out of hand as the JD(S) and the Congress, which are at the helm, continue to squabble. In fact, things in Jammu & Kashmir are critical with the Congress appointee, Mr Ghulam Nabi Azad, in need of support.

There is little progress in Uttar Pradesh where Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav has consolidated his position. On the other hand, Ms Mayawati of the BSP faces a difficult legal battle. The Congress has done very little to gain ground in the State. It is clear that Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her children do not seem keen to carry the battle to SP's doorsteps.

Undeniably, there is no dearth of talent in the UPA. Functionaries like Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Home Minister Shivraj Patil, Finance Minister P Chidambaram, Petroleum Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar are as able as anybody. However, the system of dual power centres cannot function for long. In all this it is the Congress which will bear the heaviest loss.

The machinations by Bihar Governor Buta Singh to prevent JD(U) leader Nitish Kumar from forming the Government in Bihar and the questionable support he received from Ms Sonia Gandhi and Mr Manmohan Singh, undid Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav's plans. They supported all the tactics adopted by Mr Yadav to keep his hold on the State, even allowing him to rule Bihar by proxy.

He turned a blind eye to the sufferings of the people which resulted in a verdict where votes were cast cutting across caste and religious lines. We will discuss this in greater detail in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court judgement on the unconstitutional dissolution of Bihar Assembly is still due. It would be interesting to see what will be the political fallout of the apex court's verdict on the 'unconstitutional' act.

In the last two weeks before Bihar election, the signals were loud and clear. My friend Sharad Yadav, who is generally conservative, had forecast between 130 and140 seats to the JD(U)/BJP alliance. In fact, after the third round of polling he went into graphic details and on the basis of his daily tours in constituencies forecast that voting will not be on caste lines! Mr Arun Jaitley, who conducted the BJP campaign, gave an identical assessment and a similar seat prediction. I must admit we were all surprised and a little cautious about taking his predictions at face value.

The estimates which came from the Congress and the NCP were confusing. Moreover, it was clear that Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav was on the defensive. Credit must go to leaders of both the winning parties as all of them, including Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee, BJP president LK Advani, Mr Arun Jaitley, Ms Uma Bharati, Mr Sharad Yadav, Mr Nitish Kumar and Mr George Fernandes, were in the field campaigning for the NDA. They were all over Bihar touring the length and breadth of the State.

The so-called secular forces comprising RJD/Congress/ Left have been shown the door by Bihar's electorate. The JD(U)/BJP alliance has gained from every political party. But in all this Mr Ram Vilas Paswan of the LJP seems to have been 'squeezed' out. As I wrote last week, the time has come for Mr Paswan to take some important decisions for the future. He may well be an important part of the Third Front in case he is held responsible for the 'defeat', and given the short shrift in the UPA.

On the other hand, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav is in serious trouble. Besides the party's rout in the election, he has several legal cases to contend with. He is dogged by Rs 900 crore 'fodder scam' and other scandals. There will be little protection from the State Government. To make matters worse, the Supreme Court is already looking into many matters concerning him and his family which will make it difficult for the Central investigative agencies to 'delay or be evasive'. Matters within the RJD, which includes leaders like Shahabuddin, Pappu Yadav, Anand Mohan, Subhas and Sadhu Yadav, can get out of hand.

The road ahead is thus difficult for Mr Yadav. As if this was not enough, he has substantially lost his political base. The 25 MPs who support Mr Yadav at the Centre seem to be his only security as the UPA cannot stay in power without his support. A 'coup' within the RJD cannot be ruled out as Mr Yadav becomes a 'liability' for the future.

In the last general election the NDA lost 50 seats. This loss was compounded by the poor performance of the TDP in Andhra Pradesh and ADMK in Tamil Nadu. This paved the way for the UPA to form Government. However, the trend is reversing once again. As numbers determine who will be in power in a coalition Government, let us see what the future holds for us.

All parties remain in touch in order to work out possible alliances when the need arises. As Mr Nitish Kumar humbly and with dignity accepts his responsibility as the Chief Minister of Bihar. Let us felicitate the people of the State who have voted for good governance and development casting away caste and religious prejudices. One must congratulate the Election Commission which ensured that the elections were conducted in a free and fair manner.

The Governor has been 'evicted' from his house in New Delhi and may well lose his post in Bihar. However, in all fairness, he was only carrying out 'orders'. The Bihar elections have made it clear that those who depend on criminal-turned-politicians to deliver the 'goods' never succeed in the long run. What happened in Bihar can happen in other States as well. Needless to say, this would be a boon for Indian democracy.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Once again excellent article by Arun Nehru. He is still thinking TDP will come back, i doubt because Naidu is still dreaming about third front which now looks like remote case. Naidu came openly against BJP which was his biggest mistake.
In Karnataka, BJP may do better but all again depends on village voting trend. But for sure Congress and JD need to be kicked out.
But Nehru still thinks none can oust Commies from WB.
<b>Bangalore to be named Bengaluru</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Cong allies set to revolt </b>
Sanjay K Jha/ New Delhi
After Bihar, the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) is doomed to project a disintegrated face in Assam. A third front involving UPA allies appears all set to emerge against the Congress in the Assembly election due early next year.

<b>This indication was given by Mr PA Sangma, who formally joined the NCP on Tuesday, when he said his party was negotiating with the CPI, CPI-M, Prafulla Mahanta faction of the AGP and the United Democratic Front (UDF), an umbrella organisation of 14 Muslim outfits in the State. If Mr Sangma manages to sew up this front, the Congress will face an uphill task in retaining power in the biggest northeastern State.</b>

Arguing that the people of Assam were "fed up with the Congress Government," Mr Sangma predicted a hung assembly in the State, hinting at his front's vital role in the government formation process. To a question if the NCP was ruling out any pre-poll understanding with the Congress in Assam, party chief Sharad Pawar intervened to say, "it is too early to say anything. We are not ruling out anything."

But the composition of the third front that is yet to come into being bears a clear message of anti-Cong-ressism. That Mr Prafulla Mahanta will not like to come to an accommodation with the Congress before the election is not open to dispute and the UDF was born out of Muslims' frustration with the Tarun Gogoi Government. Mr Sangma, who on Tuesday averred that the anti-Sonia chapter was closed for good, hasn't abandoned his anti-Congress politicking at all as is manifest in the NCP being the main Opposition party in Congress-ruled Meghalaya.

Asked how could the NCP follow different routes in different States as it was a partner of the Congress at the national level and in Maharashtra, Goa, Arunachal and Bihar, Mr Sangma, sitting beside his boss Pawar, argued, "it is not practical to have a universal approach in politics. You have to see every case on merit. In Meghalaya, the next Assembly election will be fought mainly between the Congress and the NCP."

Mr Sangma, who formally resigned as Lok Sabha member to escape the anti-Defection Law before formally joining the NCP on Tuesday, said he had nothing against Ms Sonia Gandhi now as she had herself refused to become the Prime Minister.

He showed his reluctance to answer questions relating to his recent past, including his unpleasant exit from the NCP and his stint in the Trinamool Congress, and pleaded with the media to focus on future. He said he was already working under the leadership of Ms Sonia Gandhi as she was the chairperson of the UPA.

Mr Pawar also said Mr Sangma quit the NCP due to "some differences" but he was happy to have him back. He declared that Mr Sangma would be the NCP's candidate for Tura by-election as and when it takes place. Mr Pawar said he was not keen to force Mr Sangma to resign his seat as he was already working for the NCP but the leader from the North-East himself wanted to remove that technical hitch.

Cong upbeat, JDS down
Somehow we missed this news. Can somebody familiar with Karnataka politics shed some more light on this.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Of the 27 districts in the state, the Congress has a clear majority in 13 districts and the JD(S) in two at the zilla panchayat level. In the 12 remaining districts the Congress has to choose as its partner the JD(S) or former deputy chief minister Siddaramaiah�s All India Progressive Janata Dal (AIPJD).<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The Congress� performance stands out in comparison with that of JD(S) and BJP but looks dim, when judged against its feat in the last panchayat elections when it wrested control of 26 of the 27 ZPs. For the BJP, which emerged as the single largest party with 79 seats in the assembly polls but failed to reach the magic figure to govern the state, the results have prived it is not urban-centric.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
This one has more details.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The Congress in Karnataka has secured a majority in 18 districts in local body elections held last week.
Congress's coalition partner, Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S), however, managed to get majority in only three districts, while the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) got majority only in <b>Bellary</b> district. The polls were held in all the 27 districts of the state.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
I believe there is forum member form Bellary here. Commets please.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Of the ZP 999 seats, Congress bagged 486, JD-S 269, BJP 152, All India Progressive Janata Dal (AIPJD) 34, Samajwadi Party (SP) 9 and the remaining seats were captured by independents (41) and other regional or smaller parties.

In the taluk panchayat election, manual counting of votes was completed in 3,657 seats. The JD-S bagged 946, BJP 540, AIPJD 145, SP 35, Janata Dal (United) 18, Janata Party 14, CPI (M) 6, BSP 6 and Independents 134.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Panchayat poll cuts ‘son of soil’ Gowda to size
Talking of Bellary.
Its not Sonia�s Bellary but Sushma�s
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> Sonia and Sushma, both outsiders to Bellary, had fought from Bellary Lok Sabha constituency in the 1999 general elections and Sonia had won it.
However, Sushma Swaraj had succeeded in creating a BJP wave in the nook and corner of the district and after six years Bellary seems to have reaped the political crop sown by Sushma.
New alliance? Deve Gowda meets Vajpayee
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The 30-minute one-to-one meeting between the two former Prime Ministers assumes significance as Gowda is reportedly upset with the Congress' attitude towards JD-S, sources said.

A faction of the state Congress led by former Chief Minister (and Maharashtra Governor) S M Krishna is reportedly in favour of the party striking an alliance with Gowda's arch rival Siddaramaiah, who had parted ways with the JD-S and floated his own progressive Janata Dal.
Look who's singing a different tune now?
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav on Monday alleged the Congress party and a top industrialist of the country had hatched a plot to kill him and he would disclose facts about the same at a ‘suitable’ time.
Congress hatched a plot to kill me: Mulayam
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Venkaiah asked to rush to Karnataka </b>
New Delhi

Amidst speculation of tie-up with ruling Janata Dal (S) in Karnataka, BJP President Rajnath Singh on Tuesday asked senior party leader M Venkaiah Naidu to rush to the State and be available to the State party for "consultation and guidance".<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Incursions of Hindutva - By Harsh Mander (Jan. 8 2006, Times of
India) Tribals in the forested interiors of India today face a grave,
new threat. Already dispossessed of land and forest, grappling with
debt, hunger, exploitation and bondage, the tribals now face
incursions of radical Hindutva, systematically propagated by front
organisations of the Sangh, threatening to divide and communalise
tribal communities and further distance them from justice.

For the majority of tribals, the Muslim is invisible. The enemy
invented for them instead by the Sangh is Christianity, demonised as
a dangerous foreign conspiracy to destabilise India, propagated by
inducement and fraud by missionaries, pastors and nuns. Healthcare
and education provided by them are dismissed as bribes for

...Independent investigations established that these attacks were a
result of hatred and suspicion systematically introduced by activists
of Sangh organisations like Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram and Hindu Jagran

With the Sangh planning a Shabri Kumbh in Dangs in February 2006,
there are fears of a repeat. There have been several such gatherings
organised by Hindutva activists in the region in recent years,
including a Vishal Hindu Mahasangam in Jhabua in MP in 2002, and
another Kumbh in Bhilwada in Rajasthan in 2004.

<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Jan 18 2006, 02:31 AM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Jan 18 2006, 02:31 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--><!--QuoteBegin--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Venkaiah asked to rush to Karnataka </b>
New Delhi

Amidst speculation of tie-up with ruling Janata Dal (S) in Karnataka, BJP President Rajnath Singh on Tuesday asked senior party leader M Venkaiah Naidu to rush to the State and be available to the State party for "consultation and guidance".<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Even Better.
Gowda's son stakes claim in Karnataka
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Kumaraswamy has 46 of the 58 MLAs with him and has broken away from the faction that remains loyal to his father, H D Deve Gowda. 
<b>Governor tells Dharam to prove majority by Jan 27</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Chaturvedi said a situation had arisen in which "doubts have been raised" on whether the government headed by Dharam Singh as Chief Minister and MP Prakash as Deputy Chief Minister enjoyed a majority in the assembly.

Chaturvedi said <b>he was under no pressure from anybody.</b>

<b>"It's the decision for me to take ultimately. There is no need for any recommendation to the (Central) government. A situation has arisen, I hope to resolve it. If it's not resolved I will think of the future,"</b> he said.

<b>"The responsibility is on Governor. I have to take the decision. It's not for me to take instructions,"</b> he said.

Chaturvedi said he did not think there was a constitutional crisis in the state.

He said there were a number of constitutional remedies, judicial determinations and many reports such as of Administration Reforms Commission, Sarkaria Commission and verdicts in cases like the SR Bommai one, to resolve what he termed as political tangle.

<b>"Position is clear. I don't think there is any constitutional crisis,"</b> he said.

On the letter written to him by the <b>JD-S National President requesting him not to entertain the plea of HD Kumarswamy, the Governor said it was beyond his jurisdiction.</b>
Gowda assures Congress on saving Dharam Singh Govt.

Bangalore, Jan. 19 (PTI): Facing a revolt from his own son, former Prime Minister and JD(S) chief H D Deve Gowda, today assured Congress leaders in Delhi that he would make all efforts to save the coalition government in Karnataka.

Gowda held out this assurance to Ahmed Patel, Political Secretary to Congress President Sonia Gandhi and A K Antony, in-charge of party affairs in Karnataka, when they had a telephonic talk with him, JD(S) spokesman Y S V Datta, told PTI.

Gowda told the Congress leaders that to maintain his secular credentials, under no circumstances would he allow his partymen to tie-up with the BJP, Datta said.<span style='color:blue'><i>
To maintain a false secular credential of one man entire state and people have to suffer?</i>
"I will make all possible efforts to find a solution to the on-going crisis much before the Chief Minister N Dharam Singh, faces a vote of confidence on January 27," Datta quoted Gowda as saying.

Meanwhile, Datta called on State Assembly Speaker Krishna and requested him not to act on the letter submitted by JD(S) State President N Thippanna, seeking recognition to H D Kumaraswamy as the JD(S) Legislature Party leader.

However, the JD(S) has not submitted any request to the Speaker pleading for rejection of the rebel group's claim for recognising it in the House, he said.

In a letter presented to the Speaker, Thippana said 40 MLAs and four MLCs had attended the meeting of the Legislature Party held yesterday and elected Kumaraswamy as leader, replacing incumbent and Deputy Chief Minister M P Prakash.

However, Prakash, contested the rebels' claim asserting he continued to be the elected JDSLP leader.
Centre keeps 'close eye' on Karnataka

New Delhi, Jan. 19 (PTI): The Centre is keeping a "close eye" on political developments in Karnataka with Home Minister Shivraj Patil, speaking to Governor T N Chaturvedi, and Chief Minister Dharam Singh.

The report of the Governor is awaited, ministry officials said.

Patil has briefed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, on the developments in the state and he is keeping himself updated about the situation, the sources said.

Noting that the Governor had given the Chief Minister time till January 27 to prove his majority, sources said no immediate Central action was called for.

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